This guide is a very selective list of materials covering popular culture. Be sure to research specific subjects related to popular culture including: art, design, photography, popular music, popular fiction, graphic novels, comics, animation, illustration, science fiction, advertising, journalism, communications, graphic design, fashion, hobbies, food, recreation, television, radio, film, theater, newspapers, magazines, the world wide web, podcasts, blogs, computer games, sports, etc. Browse through other research guides in those subjects to see what other librarians have listed as important resources.
American Popular Cutlure: A Historical Bibliography. SocSci Ref E 169.1 .X1 A53 1984
Best. American Popular Illustration: A Reference Guide. HumRef NC 975 .B45 1984
Cinema: Year by Year: 1894-2003. HumRef PN 1993.5 .A1 C566 2003
Directory of Popular Culture Collections. 1989. E 169.1 .D54 1989
Encyclopedia of Contemporary Chinese Culture. SocSciref DS 779.23 .E53x 2005
Encyclopedia of Contemporary French Culture. HumRef DC 33.7 .E53 1998
Encyclopedia of Contemporary German Culture. HumRef DD 290.26 .E53 1999
Encyclopedia of Contemporary Italian Culture. HumRef DG 450 .E53 2000
Encyclopedia of Contemporary Japanese Culture. SocSciRef DS 822.5 .E516 2002
Encyclopedia of Contemporary Latin American and Caribbean Cultures. 3 vols. SocSciRef F 1406 .E515 2000
Encyclopedia of Contemporary Spanish Culture. SocSciRef DP 233.5 .E63 2002
Gale Virtual Reference Library (GVRL)
This is an online database of encyclopedias and specialized reference sources for multidisciplinary research. Titles relevant to popular culture include: St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture; International Dictionary of Film and Filmmakers; Encyclopedia of Recreation and Leisure in America; Fashion, Costume, and Culture: Clothing, Headwear, Body Decorations, and Footwear through the Ages; Encyclopedia of Food and Culture; Encyclopedia of Communication and Information.
The Greenwood Guide to American Popular Culture. 4 vols. 2002. SocSciRef E 169.1 .G74x 2002
Hoffman. American Popular Culture: A Guide To The Reference Literature. 1995. HumRef E 169.1 .X1 H633 1995
Inge. Handbook of American Popular Culture. 3 vols. 1978. SocSciRef E 169.1 .H2643
------. Handbook of American Popular Literature. HumRef PS 169.P64 X62 1988
Landrum. American Popular Culture: A Guide to Information Sources. 1982. SocSciRef E 169.1 .X1 L28
St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture. 5 vols. SocSciRef E 169.1 .S764 2000
To look for books on your subject, search the Library Catalog using keyword combinations of what you think your topic is, until you determine the correct subejct headings to be used. Remember that subject headings tend to be general. Examples:
popular culture AND United States
United States AND Social life and customs
comics AND japan
popular music AND Brazil
minorities in motion pictures
television broadcasting AND social aspects
You can also search for documentaries or popular films dealing with popular culture. Example: Super Size Me (2004).
To find articles in journals or magazines, search your topic in several periodical Indexes listed by subject in the library website. This is only a selected list useful for popular culture journals:
Academic Search Premier (EBSCO)
America: History & Life
Film Index International
To find out about current topics of discussion in a certain subject, browse current issues of these journals: American Heritage, American Quarterly, American History Illustrated, Cultural Studies, Billboard, Euroepan Journal of Cultural Studies; Popular Music & Society; Journal of American Culture, Journal of Popular Culture, Journal of Popular Film, Journal of Popular Film & Television, Journal of Popular Music Studies, Studies in Latin American Popular Culture, South Asian Popular Culture; International Journal of Cultural Studies; Images: A Journal of Cultural Studies; Invisible Culture: An Electronic Journal for Visual Studies; Postmodern culture; Popular Culture; Wired; Studies in Latin American Popular Culture; etc.
The following list is also a very selective list. Be sure to see lists of websites suggested by librarians in other subjects.